GREENFIELD — As summer approaches, health and safety organizations are encouraging residents to take care of their skin.
The American Cancer Society and the National Council on Skin Cancer Prevention have designated Friday as “Don’t Fry Day” in an effort to increase sun safety awareness.
The organizations encourage residents to wear broad spectrum sunscreen with an SPF of 30 or higher, clothing that limits the amount of skin exposed, a hat and sunglasses to protect their eyes as they head outdoors this weekend and summer.
Here’s what you need to know about skin cancer:
1. It’s the most common form of cancer.
Skin cancer continues to be the most common type of cancer in the United States. The American Cancer Society estimates more than 3.5 million new cases of skin cancer will be diagnosed this year; that’s more than breast, lung, colon and prostate cancer combined.
2. Melanoma is the most deadly variety.
While it accounts for fewer than 2 percent of all skin cancer cases, melanoma is the most deadly form of skin cancer. The American Cancer Society expects nearly 75,000 new cases of melanoma will be diagnosed this year, and the disease will cause about 10,000 deaths.
In Indiana, about 1,500 cases of melanoma are expected to be diagnosed this year, and about 250 patients are expected to die from the disease.
3. It’s largely preventable.
There are easy ways to reduce the risk of skin cancer. The American Cancer Society recommends residents stay out of tanning beds and wear protection when they’re in the sun.
“Slip, slop, slap and wrap” is the organization’s motto when it comes to reminding residents to protect their skin.
Slip on a shirt; slop on broad spectrum sunscreen of SPF 30 or higher; slap on a hat; wrap on sunglasses to protect eyes and the sensitive skin around them from UV rays.
Source: American Cancer Society